Twenty-seven captives imprisoned by militant group Boko Haram were released Saturday in Cameroon.
Among the former hostages were 10 Chinese workers who were kidnapped on May 16 from a construction camp, and the wife of Cameroon’s Vice Prime Minister Amadou Ali, who was kidnapped July 27 around Kolofata.
According to government spokesman Issa Tchiroma Bakari, the Cameroon officials negotiated with militants, but did not pay a ransom. The militants had initially asked for money and for the release of all Boko Haram members taken captive in Cameroon.
President Paul Biya announced the hostages were finally “safe,” however many suffered mental and emotional abuse and upon arrival to safety were immediately taken to a hospital for treatment.
Former hostage Seini Boukar, a Muslim cleric, mayor and traditional ruler of Kolofata, told VOA he and the other captives had not been physically brutalized but were psychologically tormented by losing their freedom.
Boko Haram is responsible for the latest attack in Nigeria, where nearly 2,000 people were killed. Amnesty International called the attack the “deadliest massacre” at the hands of the terrorist group since 2009. They have yet to return the 200 missing Nigeria schoolgirls who were kidnapped in April 2014. It is believed the girls were sold and married off to Boko Haram members and affiliates.
Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan has declared a state of emergency in three northeastern states — Borno, Yobe and Adamawa — but little effort to curb the group’s violence has been made.
SOURCE: Voa News | PHOTO CREDIT: Screenshot